Publishing flamebait [Fwd: Pragmatic Bookshelf releases "From Java To Ruby"]

Hans Fugal hans at
Wed Jun 28 14:24:26 MDT 2006

On Wed, 28 Jun 2006 at 13:08 -0600, Gabriel Gunderson wrote:
> I thought this email was kinda funny (from the Pragmatic Bookshelf) and
> wanted to share it.  This is the *one* book you must have in the
> trenches of a Ruby VS Java flame war.

If you don't use Java or Ruby how can you make the claim that this is
the *one* book you must have?

> I love how the first paragraph suggests that Java prevents your team
> form being productive, is inflexible, hard to maintain and is not the
> best tool for the job.  I'm not saying those things *are* or *are not*
> true; I'm just saying I think it's funny to sell a book as interested in
> tearing down Java as it is building up Ruby.

That's not what I get from the paragraphs you've posted at all. I see an
audience (people who want to migrate away from Java to something else,
like Ruby), and an author defining what audience and what purpose he is
addressing. He doesn't go out of his way to bash Java nor try to
convince the reader that he should hate or like Java. It's a given that
the audience exists, and it's a given that the reason the audience
exists is that a lot of people have these sentiments.

It may be that Java is "just as good" in any sense of the phrase you
might care to argue, but the fact remains that a lot of people feel this
way about Java.

A book about "building up Ruby" would be titled "Why Ruby R0x0rs". If
Java were its only competitor, it might even be subtitled "Why Java
Sux0rs". The book is simply (I gather from the title) about going from
Java to Ruby, and the fact that such a book was written and published
implies that there's people that want to do that.

Please don't paint us Rubyists as Java hatemongers out there to destroy
the good name of Java. It's simply not true. Some in the Java community
are threatened by Ruby, and things can get ugly when an 800 pound
gorilla feels threatened, but that's just the way things are.

Hans Fugal ;
There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the 
right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
    -- Johann Sebastian Bach
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